Is Net Neutrality the First Amendment of our Time?

That’s the question Ars Technica asks – spurred by comments made by Al Franken at the Netroots conference on July 24. Here’s a except from his comments (you can read and view more on the Ars Technica site)…

“I believe that net neutrality is the First Amendment issue of our time,” Franken said.

“Comcast merges with NBC. How long do you think it will take for Verizon and AT&T to start looking at CBS/Viacom and ABC/Disney? If no one stops them, how long do you think it will take before four or five mega-corporations effectively control the flow of information in America, not only on television but online? If we don’t protect net neutrality now, how long do you think it will take before Comcast/NBC/Universal or Verizon/CBS/Viacom or AT&T/ABC/DirecTV or BP/Halliburton/Walmart/Fox/Domino’s Pizza [laughter] will start favoring its content over everyone else’s?”

As Ars Technica points out – Net Neutrality seemed to be the be-all-end-all topic in the last couple of years but lately I don’t hear as much. It will be interesting to see if Franken’s comments spur a resurgence of attention.

If it doesn’t, a recent article from Free Press might. According to the article…

“Despite public outrage and repeated promises of transparency, the FCC continues to meet behind closed doors with the largest companies to negotiate a secret deal that would short circuit public participation in policymaking that will shape the Internet for a generation,” declared Free Press’s Josh Silver in a message just sent to us. “The great irony here is that the FCC’s ‘transparency’ policy is part of the negotiations behind closed doors.”

This entry was posted in MN, Policy by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

I have a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science. I have been interested or involved in providing access to information through the Internet since 1994, when I worked for Minnesota’s first Internet service provider. I am pleased to be a part of the Blandin on Broadband Team. I also work with MN Coalition on Government Information, Minnesota Rural Partners, and the American Society for Information Science and Technology.

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